After Effects Help: I cannot make lightning look remotely real


Hey everyone! I’m trying to recreate a Thor style lightning effect and I am just not getting anywhere near close to what I want.

Example of what I ended up with:

I have followed these tutorials and still no luck in making it look reasonably real.

Example of what I’m trying to recreate:

I will also attach the video I am working with shot on RED Epic Dragon 5k at I think 6:1 compression

password: cgtalk

Any and all help is much appreciated. I did maybe 5 different versions of trying to make this lightning look decent. I don’t know why stylize/glow doesn’t work right or anything else. I tried adjustment layer with an exposure with a wiggle expression on how many stops so it vibrates sort of with the lightning to create that glow look somewhat more organically…

But anyways thanks for all your help everyone.